I am a Breastfeeding Mama.
When I lost my breast milk supply after attending my first blogging conference last summer, I learned how fragile that part of my identity was. I love every aspect of providing nutrition for my children, but breastfeeding doesn’t come without its challenges.
Breastfeeding mothers everywhere should have access to information that allows them to make an informed choice and the support they need to breastfeed. Even in developed countries, where we needn’t worry about the quality of our water or question the integrity of formula makers, we still have a long way to go to support breastfeeding moms.
Save the Children Breastfeeding Report
I am honored to partner with Save the Children, as member of the Global Team of 200, to bring awareness to the newest report on breastfeeding that highlights many of the challenges mothers face when choosing to breastfeed. The report outlines 4 barriers prevalent in the US and other developed countries that moms deal with; whether unfriendly facilities, labor laws that don’t support a mother’s need to pump, the fact of the matter remains, we are just not doing enough to support mothers who choose to breastfeed.
But, we’re the lucky ones. For those giving birth to children in developed countries, choosing to breastfeed is not necessarily a matter of life or death. However, as the recent report on breastfeeding published by Save the Children states, breastfeeding is critical to preventing malnutrition and saving children’s lives in the developing world.
Breastfeeding immediately after birth could help save 830,000 newborn babies from dying a year, and exclusive breastfeeding for six months could save even more babies and children.”
Can you believe that?! Over 800,000 babies will live because they were breastfed immediately after birth, receiving the amazing superfood known as colostrum. Even more will survive if breastfed until the age of 6 months. As the report mentions, issues such as cultural resistance, hugely funded marketing schemes (combined with issues of lack of clean water) and malnutrition are key challenges to improve the child mortality rate.
Whether you breast fed your babies or not, I know that mothers want the best for their children. We are all enough, by way of breast milk or formula. I really believe that. And fortunately, for many of us, breastfeeding is a choice. But for moms of developing countries, breastfeeding is paramount to the survival of their child. For them, there is not a choice – babies live when breastfed.
I invite you to please visit http://www.savethechildren.org/1000-days and sign the petition to help mothers around the world get more support in breastfeeding and lifesaving nutrition for their babies. Ask our Secretary of State, John Kerry, to renew the U.S. commitment to the 1,000 Days Call to Action –a lifesaving initiative that improves nutrition for pregnant mothers and their babies.
To read the full report, visit the Save the Children website. Also, be sure to follow the hashtag #FirstHour on Twitter and check out this great video of actress Isla Fisher learning advancements made in Brazil!
*Disclosure: I am a part of the Global Team of 200 and Social Good Moms‘ 24-Hour Blogathon spreading the word about Save the Children’s new breastfeeding report, Superfood for Babies. Sign the petition urging Secretary Kerry to help mothers around the world get more support around breastfeeding and lifesaving nutrition for their babies.